There is something to be said

for being a renter,

of watching over a place

without the obligation

to improve it.


The Native Americans

made it a practice

to leave little trace of themselves

on the landscape.


Few of us can bear

to travel so lightly.

Yet this is our condition:

to occupy this life,

knowing we will

be parted from it,

but not when.


At sunset my shadow stretches

over the sea as I ease myself in

for the last swim of summer.

For thirty years I've immersed

in the cold waters of this cove

and felt cradled by sea and sky.

In their ever-changing immensities

I sense the unpossessable sublime.


I sink my restless thoughts to silence

so I may cleave to my true purpose.


Tethered, words enter the mind

through the eye or the ear,

to make of themselves

the weightless structure

apprehended wholly or in part,

like a shape shifting in the mist,

reverberant as a song,

to be taken up or forgotten,

like spent desire, or sunlight

shining on water, a fading reflection.